I’ve been using Windows Live Writer to create drafts for this blog for several years. The, recently decommissioned, Mesh/Live Mesh sync service to enabled me to blog from my PC or Netbook. When I fired up Windows Live Writer all the post drafts, images and other resources would be identical.
SkyDrive, nearly but not quite Mesh
Microsoft SkyDrive is the Mesh replacement. It is nicely integrated in Windows 8/Office 13 but it has one (for me) crucial missing feature. Mesh allowed you to sync any folder, anywhere, to any chosen location on the other machine. I could use Mesh to clone C:\Users\RobinCapper\My Documents\My Weblog Posts to say C:\Users\RCNetbook\My Documents\My Weblog Posts and all the contents sync'd.
With SkyDrive Microsoft chose to follow the Dropbox model and forces you to build a Sync folder hierarchy under the hardcoded User/SkyDrive Folder. Unfortunately Windows Live Writer is hard coded to save drafts in User\My Documents\My Weblog Posts which SkyDrive does not sync. It was one reason I much preferred Mesh to Dropbox.
Redirect Live Writer hack
This hack from LEHSYS allows you to redirect the Live Writer folders, so I can use SkyDrive!
Windows Live Writer is a fantastic offline blogging tool with a WYSIWYG editor. It interfaces with just about any blog service [Blogger, LiveJournal, TypePad, WordPress, etc.] If you’re a blogger you’ll find this tool incredibly helpful- and it’s refreshingly free from Microsoft.
One of the things that’s a hindrance to the application; it doesn’t let you choose where you want to put your drafts and recent posts.
But ah-ha! Seems after years of asking, there’s a registry hack for Windows Live Writer that’ll allow you to save your Drafts and Recent posts anywhere you’d like…
Their post has full details and, if you’re not comfortable editing the registry, a utility to do the change for you but these are the basic steps:
- Open up regedit (in Win7, just type “regedit” into the start menu)
- Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows Live\Writer
- Right click on the “Writer” folder in the left pane and choose New > String Value
- Name the value PostsDirectory and then double-click on it to edit
- You can try pointing it to your documents folder, which is normally “C:\Users\<your-username>\Documents\” in Win7
- Or point it somewhere else.
- Note that Writer will create two child folders wherever you point it: Drafts and Recent Posts
This works on the Windows 7/Essentials 11 and Windows 8/Essentials 12.